Moving To Spain? Let’s Talk About The Cost of Living

If you are considering moving to a new life in Spain then it is important that you plan your budget in advance. If you have a job offer on the table you need to get an idea of how far the salary will take you. Don’t get on the plane without a clear idea of the cost of living in Spain. Whilst Spain has a reputation as one of the cheapest destinations in Western Europe, one must not lose sight of the fact that wages are low, and that real estate is disproportionately expensive.

This article has a lot of data points, but here are a few fast facts to give you a sense of pricing: you can get a haircut for 10 Euros, a beer for 2, but may have to pay 50 Euros a month for a gym to work off the calories. A cheap date can be had for 16 Euros if you take in a movie (6 Euros) and tapas for two (10 Euros).

With real estate, if you are thinking of buying in one of the major cities then as at February 2010 you will be paying around 3,500 Euros per square meter for a centrally located flat. This is about 30% less than 2009 prices, and compares to around 11 Euros per month per square meter if you want to rent. This data applies to Barcelona and Madrid, but rent gets cheaper in cities like Seville where it drops to as low as 6 Euros per square meter per month.

One thing to watch out for is the Balearic Islands: The prices can be higher than the mainland.

Once you are in your property; whether purchased or rented, you are responsible for paying the utilities. Even in a modest flat these expenses can soon rack with gas costing around 25 Euros per month per person when used to heat water and a stove. Electricity costs around the same, and will rise in the summer by 15 Euros per month if it is used for air conditioning. Phone bills will depend on your usage, but bear in mind that a landline costs at least 20 Euros per month just for line rental. Parking is usually extra when you rent a flat, and in cities expect to pay around 100 Euros a month.

The cost of healthcare will vary depending on your country of origin. If you are from Europe then you may benefit from a reciprocal arrangement with your home nation insurance. The important thing is to check the facts and make sure that you are insured; otherwise this could end up being an expense that bankrupts you.

Eating out need not be expensive if you know the right places: A meal for two can cost as little as 10 Euros at a decent tapas joint, and you can get a beer for 2 Euros – these are prices far lower than places like London and Paris. And some say the food it tastier too! Groceries for one can come in at under 200 Euros a month.

So all told what is the cost of living in Spain? Well it will vary with income, but to have a decent lifestyle you should make sure you have at least 1,500 Euros of disposable income each month.

Benefits of Owning a Second Home in Spain

Spain is one of the most popular countries in Europe for holiday-makers and tourists. The climate is enviable, with hot summers and mild winters. Every region of Spain has its own, unique culture, different styles of food, traditions and local fiestas. One thing, that every city, town or village, has in common is a warm welcome.

If you are thinking of buying a second home, you are sure to find a place in Spain that has the right life-style for you. Costal areas are a great attraction; the Costa Brava, Costa  Dorada, Costa del Sol or the Costa Blanca, are all tempting locations for a second home. For city lovers, Seville, Madrid, Granada or Barcelona, are all historic, cosmopolitan cities, ideal for holiday apartments. Spain has locations for all tastes; there is the Camino de Santiago to be walked and the slopes of Sierra Nevada to be skied.

Owning your own second home means that you visit whenever you wish, and for as long as you wish. Budget allowing, you can choose the type of property you want, be it a studio, an apartment, a town house or a villa. Your property will be suitable for you and your family and you can equip it to your needs and taste. Excess luggage does not have to be carried to and fro; it can be left in a wardrobe.

Many second home owners find that an extended stay in the winter months is beneficial with blue skies and lower heating bills.

Owning a second home will mean that you will have more time to get to know the region of your choice. Spanish is a relatively easy language to pick up, and in general, the local residents are helpful. Local shops and markets supply very fresh, seasonal fruit and vegetables, a wide variety of different fish, and fresh meat. Visiting “bodegas” and enjoying “tapas” are part of the Spanish way of life and a custom well worth adopting.

Many people find it financially beneficial to rent out their home to holidaymakers or travel companies. If you are interested in using your second home for holiday renting, it will be necessary to check with the local town hall authorities, in order to ensure that permission for holiday rental is available. A good number of apartment blocks and housing estates are solely for residential purposes and can only be let for long term rentals.

Home prices vary largely and at the moment there is a glut of properties on the market, so it can be a good time to invest. Take into consideration travel needs; you do not want to be too far from buses, trains or airports. Some bargains are to be found for a quick sale, but it is always best not to rush when buying abroad. A second home in Spain should be an investment to be enjoyed.

web design miami

Web design elements to keep in mind

So, you are debating a website for your business. You’ve been looking at a lot of websites, especially those of your competitors, but you’re still confused over which features would be good for your site. Let’s see if we can eliminate some of the confusion.

The big decision is to decide what the purpose of your site is going to be. Obviously, it’s to sell your business; there is no question of that. The question is how you want to do that. There are three basic ways to do that: a stand-alone site, a community-oriented site, or a shopping cart. All other features will come from that.

Stand-alone sites are the default. They are the easiest to maintain, are the cheapest to create, and hold your place on the web. For a small business that just needs something to lead customers to your salespeople, a stand-alone site can work rather well. Since you also looking for something that requires little maintenance, the site will also have few features beyond an index page, listed contacts, a history of the company, biographies of its leadership and salespeople, and some of the products or services that the company offers. There may pictures of the business, and possibly a catalog in either pdf or doc format, but not much more. After all, the idea is to simply act as an advertisement and little else. Please feel free to contact me if you need help. I work with top-notch web design miami firm before.

Community-oriented sites are a bit more involved. Not only do you need to design everything that a stand-alone site does, or at least have that information somewhere on the site, you also need to create something that will help build community. At this point, you need to build some sort of discussion board, or other means for people to share information. The discussion board is optimal, as you provide a way for people to share information and to get help, preferably in topics that are relevant to what services or products at your store. You can also allow them to share art projects or other images, act as classified ads, or even just post notices. Just be advised that this site requires a lot of maintenance.

Shopping carts are great for businesses that are product oriented. A customer places an order through the site, and then someone in real life fulfills the order. This site is reasonably low-maintenance (all that is required is to update products, prices, and specials), and enables you to take advantage of the internet to sell your products.

Ultimately, whichever features you choose should serve to sell your business. Decide on how much maintenance you want to do, and what the purpose of the site is, and then go for it. The website is yours; just make sure that it does what you want to do, and don’t throw too many bells and whistles at it and you should do fine. You don’t want your site looking too garish, or giving a potential headache to potential customers. Remember that, and your site will do more than you could ever hope that it would.

seo miami

What exactly is search engine optimization?

The term search engine optimization has not been fully defined in one simple sentence. This is because search engine optimization is made up of several components. However, our purposes we can to find search engine optimization as a set of methods used to improve the visibility of a website in the search engine listings. The goal is to rank number one in the search engine listings. You want to rank high in search engines such as Google, Yahoo and MSN. Seeing as Google is one of the most popular search engines out there, we will focus on how to improve your rankings in the Google search engine.

Google uses several factors to assess where your site belongs in the search engines results page (SERP). Google does this by using internal and external factors that surround your website. Internal factors are factors such as new content, outgoing links, header tags, and so forth. External factors is basically the number of back links, which is the number of other websites linking back to your page.

When you are creating your website it is extremely important to make the content relevant to your target audience. By grouping your content into different areas on your website, you can easily pick up lots of search engine traffic. This not only helps people find your website but it helps keep your website organized so that people will return to visit it and maybe even bookmark it for future references. Just having content on its own is not enough to rank high in the search engines. In order to rank high on search engines, like Google, it is important to continuously update your website and provide new content or new articles. Generally when someone designs a website they do not keep the idea of updating the site in mind. It is one of the most overlooked factors of search engine optimization. It is also probably one of the most important ways to rank high in the Google search engines and one of the easiest ways to build your page rank.

While building content is important to build your page rank and build your ranking in Google, it is less than half of the battle to achieving a high ranking in the Google search engines. The the rest of the battle involves link building. There are two ways to build your links there is internal link building and there is external link building. One of the easiest ways to quickly increase your page rank is to build inbound links to your site. this simply means having links throughout your website that link to each page this may be done with a site map or by simply having a table of contents. Once you have built up your inbound links you will want to focus on external links. External links is when somebody else links their webpage to your webpage. It is a bit like high school, the more popular you are the more friends you will have. In terms of websites the more people you have linking to your website the more popular your website will become. If need help, please feel free to leave a comment, it is my honor to help you. A friend of mine is a senior seo consultant in seo miami firm.

As you can see a search engine optimization is something that takes time and work and requires you to create new content build inbound links and build external links. It is important to pay attention to detail and do all three of these things if you only do one or two of these things you may not get the desired results.

Learning Spanish Online With Spanish Scholars

If there is one language that is quite easy to learn, it would be the Spanish language.  However, some people find it challenging to master the proper accent and diction when speaking it.  While it may seem difficult at first, the Spanish language makes use of specific pronunciation techniques that makes learning it so much simpler.

If you are one of the many people who are keen on knowing these techniques and learning how to speak like a Spanish native, the internet would be a great place to start.   Try Spanish Scholars, an online based immersion program that was design for children to learn Spanish.   but will work for all  ages.  When it comes to learning Spanish for kids, Spanish Scholars is the industry leader due to its intuitive and communicative approach.

Learning Spanish Online

A basic yet effective means to learn Spanish is to look for and enroll in an online program that teaches the fundamentals of the language. There are hundreds of different software tutors available, each of them providing lessons on speaking Spanish. The problem because finding the  right course that caters to your specific needs and learning curve.   with Spanish scholars you can go at your own pace and not worry about scheduling a time or finding the right online tutor.

A Budget-Friendly Option

Learning a foreign language can be quite expensive, especially if you decide to enroll in an actual school or university. That’s why many individuals are choosing to study Spanish online instead, as these program courses are usually more budget-friendly and cost-effective. Utilizing one of the several Spanish study plans that you may find online is one of the finest means to understanding Spanish without paying a ton of money to do so, Spanish Scholars is one of this online programs.

There are some free online courses you may take that already provide some helpful lessons on basic Spanish grammar or sentence structure. However, if you want a more thorough understanding of the language, registering in an online program is the best thing to do.

Learning at the Comfort of Your Home

Another great reason to take a Spanish language program online is the fact that you never have to leave your house just to learn how to speak it. Rather than spend your time driving to a center or a language institution every day, you could only sit on your favorite couch and open your laptop. Knowing how to speak Spanish properly becomes easier when you get to do it right from the comfort of your home.  When it comes to your kids this is the perfect method to allow them to learn from the comfort of  your home.

Have More Fun While Learning

If you are the type of person who is not into the daily grind of a typical classroom setting, an online Spanish class would be a great alternative. Getting an online software program allows you to focus more and study at your pace. Plus, you don’t have to worry about the lessons being boring as these programs offer a lot of fun practice tests as well as online games that you could play while learning the language.

If you wish to get to write or speak Spanish today, only search online for a course offering you’re interested in and get the software program. Whether it’s in the community or the workplace, you can now increase your communication skills and widen your network when you learn Spanish.

The Importance of Leather Camera Strap

Taking care of the equipment so that it can perform at its best should be uppermost in your mind during the purchase of your first digital camera or during any upgrade you think would be safe for your equipment. Most customers stress on megapixels that the camera can produce or its zooming capabilities. Nonetheless, you can expect the digital camera to produce the best pictures when you take proper care of it by installing a leather camera strap to carry it on your shoulder or around your neck.  Such an item can be found at AshwothMade, an online retailer of luxury handmade leather goods.

You may begin to wonder why a leather strap is so necessary for the camera. In fact, it is an integral portion of the camera though you get a strap with the manufacturer’s name printed on it when you buy a camera. The strap you get with the camera is too thin and basic in design and may be all right if you only keep the camera clean for taking some shots at your leisure or during holidays. You should give a thought to the ergonomic quality of the strap which comes with the camera if you are a professional or regular photographer.

The standard strap supplied with your expensive camera does not have the capacity for carrying the camera around your neck or the shoulder if you have to take it around for long durations. For getting the best results, you should buy the ergonomically and scientifically designed leather camera strap for carrying your camera which is stronger, thicker and broader than the straps supplied with it. The strap allows equal distribution of weight over a larger area of your shoulder saving you from having a sore shoulder.

The neck straps used for cameras have gone through a sea-change in fashion with time. Straps woven from materials used for ‘guitar straps’ were very common during the 60s and the 70s. Manufacturers came out with a variety of straps with bright and robust colors when neoprene entered the market as a suitable material for straps hung from the neck. With the recent entry of MOD into the fray the whole concept of how a strap should look like completely changed overnight.

MOD featured camera straps with brighter colors, wild designs, and fur linings on the underside of the straps. Hippie patterns which were seen earlier during the 60s and red brocade designs on black inspired by lingerie styles can now attract a lot of people when they get used as neck straps.

The choice of camera straps has become greater now allowing every serious photographer to get rid of camera bags and accessories with dull and monotonous colors. Photographers can now carry their cameras and other equipment safely and in style. Additionally, many of the straps are equipped with three-dimensional dotted or striped patterns that help to reduce the load on the shoulder. You can carry heavier weights on your shoulders with these straps which are made of nylon, rubber or leather. When you have a camera with a broad range of accessories to carry around, you can rest assured that the leather camera strap will do the job superbly.

Jewelry Care

Properly caring for your jewelry will help maintain its beauty for decades to come. Regardless of the type of jewelry, you should have the piece professionally cleaned and inspected every six months. Some jewelers provide this service to customers for free. Between professional cleanings, you should clean your jewelry on your own periodically to preserve its shine. Most pieces can be cleaned with a soft brush and soap and water. For diamond jewelry, use a diamond-cleaning kit. If you have silver jewelry, you should polish it regularly with silver polish to remove tarnish. Avoid wearing your jewelry when exercising or performing household chores. Also, do not expose your jewelry to any harsh chemicals, such as chlorine or cleaning products. When you store your jewelry, keep it away from other pieces to prevent scratching. A soft pouch or small box is ideal for jewelry storage.

For gold and platinum jewelry, here are some tips:

1, Avoid harsh chemicals or abrasives.
2, Don’t wear rings, bracelets and other jewelry while working with power tools or playing certain sports.
3, Store each piece separately in a soft cloth pouch or in the separate compartments of a jewelry case.
4, Check regularly that gem settings are secure. If not, ask a professional jeweler to re-set them.

Jewelry 101 – The Basic

I am here to help you learn about jewelry, jewelers and goldsmiths, and their related arts in the Renaissance, Middle Ages, Byzantine era and ancient times.

Through my own research, I have established a reasonable collection of books and articles that assist me. I am hoping that they also serve as a resource for your research too or as an aid in creating your own treasures.

The more you know about jewelry, the better equipped you will be to identify quality pieces and good values. On this page, we’ll cover some fundamentals of jewelry care.


A diamond is one of the best-known and most sought-after gemstones. Diamonds have been known to mankind and used as decorative items since ancient times; some of the earliest references can be traced to India. Sparkly and spectacular, diamonds represent love and romance, and mark the most special of milestones. They come in all sizes and shapes – and truly flawless ones are extremely rare (and the ones that cost the most). Believe it or not, bigger isn’t always better when it comes to diamonds. Diamonds are such a highly traded commodity that multiple organizations have been created for grading and certifying them based on the four Cs, which are carat, cut, color, and clarity.

While there are other shapes, these are the most sought after. Round brilliant diamonds are by far the favorites, accounting for four of every five diamonds purchased.


Gold has been a valuable and highly sought-after precious metal for coinage, jewelry, and other arts since long before the beginning of recorded history. Because of the softness of pure (24k) gold, it is usually alloyed with base metals for use in jewelry, altering its hardness and ductility, melting point, color and other properties. Alloys with lower caratage, typically 22k, 18k, 14k or 10k, contain higher percentages of copper, or other base metals or silver or palladium in the alloy. Copper is the most commonly used base metal, yielding a redder color.

When we say 22kt or 22k Gold Jewelry we mean that 22 parts of the jewelry, is gold and the balance 2 parts are some other metal(s) or equal to 91.3 percent gold plus 8.6 percent of some other metal alloy.

When we say 18Kt or 18k Gold Jewelry, we mean that 18 parts of the jewelry is gold and the balance 6 parts is some other metal or equal to about 75 percent gold plus 25 percent of some other metal alloy.

We can roughly state that each Karat is equal to approximately 4.1625 percent.

The difference of the other metal or alloys of the metal, gives the jewelry its hardness and color. We can state that 24 Karat is the softest and 10 karat the hardest, because 10kt would have 41.6 percent gold and the balance would be other metals which are mostly harder than gold. The color from the other metals enhances the beauty of the jewelry as the case may be, white gold, yellow gold, red gold etc.


Platinum’s resistance to wear and tarnish is well suited for making fine jewelry. The metal has an excellent resistance to corrosion and high temperature and has stable electrical properties. Platinum is actually more rare than even gold! It ranks among the rarest of metals. Consider this: for every 15 to 20 ounces of gold extracted, only a single ounce of platinum is mined. But unlike gold, which doesn’t work well in its purest form, platinum is used in jewelry at 90-95% purity. Platinum of this fineness is stamped 900Pt, 950 Plat or just Plat. Like gold, it is tarnish and rust resistant and will last you a lifetime, and then some. Platinum, which is white, differs from its white gold counterpart not only because it’s more expensive but also because it’s denser and therefore heavier. Jewelry trade publications advise jewelers to present minute surface scratches (which they term patina) as a desirable feature.


Silver has long been valued as a precious metal, and it is used to make ornaments, jewelry, high-value tableware, utensils, and currency coins. Jewelries are traditionally made from sterling silver (standard silver), an alloy of 92.5% silver with 7.5% copper. In the US, only an alloy consisting of at least 90.0% fine silver can be marketed as “silver” (thus frequently stamped 900). Sterling silver (stamped 925) is harder than pure silver, and has a lower melting point (893 °C) than either pure silver or pure copper. Sterling silver jewelry is often plated with a thin coat of .999 fine silver to give the item a shiny finish. This process is called “flashing”. Silver jewelry can also be plated with rhodium (for a bright, shiny look) or gold. Silver is a constituent of almost all colored carat gold alloys and carat gold solders, giving the alloys paler color and greater hardness. Silver is much cheaper than gold, though still valuable, and so is very popular with jewelers who are just starting out and cannot afford to make pieces in gold, or as a practicing material for goldsmith apprentices. Silver has also become very fashionable, and is used frequently in more artistic jewelry pieces.